Charlotte-Mecklenburg is one of the fastest-growing communities in the country and attracts both individuals and companies to our region. To continue to be attractive, our community has to have a healthy and viable local economy.
Just recently, it was announced that our community now consists of more than a million citizens. As one who was born and reared in this community, it makes me proud to say that I am a native of this community, but being proud didn’t help our community grow. It takes the efforts of several organizations, in partnership with Mecklenburg County, to make it happen. As a Mecklenburg County Commissioner, I am proud to have helped play a role in these efforts.
Mecklenburg County’s economic development efforts consist primarily of managing the Business Investment Program and other economic development grants, assisting other County departments with the redevelopment of County-owned real estate, and operating a Minority, Women and Small Business Enterprise (MWSBE) program.
I am a strong supporter of Business Investment Grants. Research shows that we get an $85.00 return for every dollar we invest in bringing jobs to our community. We must continue this trend so that we can ensure that every citizen in our community is provided with opportunities – through gainful employment – to support their families and to grow their communities. By encouraging and supporting the relocation of new businesses to the area, we can continue to help families achieve their goals, and we can potentially grow strong, vibrant, economically stable communities. We must continue to seize these economic opportunities when they present themselves.
As a result of County provided incentive grants, Mecklenburg County has been able to attract the Corporate Headquarters of some of the world’s largest companies. Several companies have announced that they are relocating to Charlotte, and many existing companies have announced that they are expanding their operations in Charlotte. Our community now enjoys thousands of new jobs and thousands more to come, along with increased economic growth – that could have been directed elsewhere.